Sudan army and Rapid Support Forces set to hold talks in Jeddah

Screen grab of bombing in Sudan.

The governments of the US and Saudi Arabia have announced that direct talks between the Sudanese army and the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) are set to commence in Jeddah. However, the ongoing conflict in Sudan’s capital shows no sign of subsiding. In a joint statement, both nations encouraged continued international support to end the fighting, urging both parties to prioritise the interests of the Sudanese nation and its people in their discussions.

For almost three weeks, close to 700 casualties have resulted from battles between the forces supporting Sudan’s de facto leader, Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, and his deputy and rival, Mohamed Hamdan Daglo. Various ceasefires have been declared since the violence escalated on April 15, but none have been maintained, AFP reported.

Despite the unrelenting fighting, President Joe Biden has warned of sanctions against those who pose a threat to the peace, security, and stability of Sudan, as well as those undermining the nation’s democratic transition. Under the rule of former autocrat Omar al-Bashir, Sudan struggled under the weight of long-standing sanctions before his removal in 2019.

UNICEF has expressed its concern for the safety of Sudanese children, with spokesman James Elder stating that the conflict had become fatal for a distressing number of youngsters. According to a trusted yet unverified partner, around 190 children have been killed and 1,700 injured in the first 11 days of the conflict. Elder warns that the true figures are likely worse than reported.

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In an effort to provide aid to those affected, at least 18 aid workers have been caught in the crossfire of the urban fighting. Several mediation efforts have been attempted since the unrest began, as both al-Burhan and Daglo continue their embittered power struggle.

The fighting has escalated concerns of a humanitarian disaster, as hundreds of thousands of refugees have been forced to flee. Casualties continue to mount, causing the mass exodus of Sudanese citizens into neighbouring countries.

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With a Bachelor's Degree in English, Jenn has plenty of experience writing and editing on different topics. After spending many years teaching English in Thailand, Jenn has come to love writing about Thai culture and the experience of being an ex-pat in Thailand. During long holidays, she travels to North of Thailand just to have Khao Soi!

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